In an editorial today, The New York Times sided with over 50 other media organizations when it excoriated the Obama administration for secretly obtaining the phone records of reporters and editors at the Associated Press:
The Obama administration, which has a chilling zeal for investigating leaks and prosecuting leakers, has failed to offer a credible justification for secretly combing through the phone records of reporters and editors at The Associated Press in what looks like a fishing expedition for sources and an effort to frighten off whistle-blowers.
…We are not convinced. For more than 30 years, the news media and the government have used a well-honed system to balance the government’s need to pursue criminals or national security breaches with the media’s constitutional right to inform the public. This action against The A.P., as the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press outlined in a letter to Mr. Holder, “calls into question the very integrity” of the administration’s policy toward the press.
The media were willing to cover for Obama in the past, but now that their ox has been gored, the administration can likely look forward to a less friendly and more adversarial press, which will only further cripple a troubled presidency.